The Daily Ghost

25 in 25 #18 07/29/2014 nTelos Pavilion, Portsmouth, VA (Zachary Adam Cohen, @thebabysmouth)

Selection: “Chalk Dust Torture”

We all know that Phish sucks and, as a year, 2014 sucked far more than most. It was obvious from the very first of the nightly Fuego’s that the band was going to phone in most, if not all of their concerts, as they coasted on well-padded laurels, cashing fat checks from their trainwreck of an album and blow-sucked their brand partners Ticketmaster and StubHub across the nation.

Even last Summer, Treigh likely already had some idea that he was about to be a pawn in Peter Shapiro’s ever widening jamband chessboard. He already owns Grandma Lesh after all. Rook to {lo}lettuce 3. By the time he reaches 60 next month, Tray’s course towards global pop star status will already be traversed. The world needs a Ginger PSY.

Shapiro likely instructed Trey to start practicing last Summer, so Ernesto had little reason to do much more than show up in whatever boho designer henley t shirt his daughters decided to style him in (James Perse is my guess for the record) and play Bob Weir-style rhythm guitar for awhile. That is, just close your eyes, do your best Yosemite Sam impression and strum randomly.

At least Summer Tour had some decent jams. Fall Tour was a fucking disgrace. The carbon emissions required to ship all those diabetic New York drug dealers (aka the phan base) all the way across the country for a joke of a tour puts Phish on par with BP in terms of climate impact. They should sell carbon offsets via Dry Goods.

Phish lumbered–like the Timber Ho Flannel Hoodie, now on sale for $39.99 beeteedubs–through the first part of 2014’s Summer tour, sounding like the old and bored rockstars they always wanted to be, but never quite became. Ben Harper is still bigger than Phish btw. Ben. Harper.

The only great thing to come out of Phish is Touchpants, the Wings of Phish! Band on the Run…to the toilet. #FARTS. Whatever.

Anyway, Mansfield sucked even though people freaked out over a disjointed, sloppy “Harry Hood” because, well, we take what we can get. SPAC had a nice 20 minutes during “Fuego” but that was about it. Where else did they go? Randall’s? One good set, ruined by Monica. And relisten to that “Tweezer” too cause it was worse than Chicago’s Terrapin. You know Rock and Roll is dead when Trey is considered the best singer in a supergroup seen by 200k people over the course of a weekend. I’d rather see Brian Wilson on The Apprentice. #Trump4Prez

I have no idea why Phish plays the South, maybe it’s a form of hippie reparations? The people are terrible, the food is fattening, the places uninteresting, they barely speak “American” as they call it. I wish the South would just fall into the Atlantic someday. Next Tuesday is wide open..

The best part of the South is listening to Southerners try to defend and explain themselves when horrible shit happens, but you know just behind their bullshit talking points about heritage, culture, and tradition, they just have that look of absolute guilt as if they wish they could just like take you aside and, looking over their shoulder to make sure no Klansmen or Loony Christians (all of em) were around, whisper “please take me with you, you are right its awful here, please please don’t leave me here.” The look on their faces when you do, in fact, leave them there, is fucking priceless. Like Troy playing a Marimba Lumina for 20 minutes only to realize that it isn’t plugged and that his bassist just upstaged him, on his own stage.

Anywho…Phish did manage to churn out out one decent jam last year, the “Chalkdust Torture” in Portsmouth. I heard the venue was nice and I had friends who were there and besides the closeted frat boys showing off their bowl cuts and sucking each other off on lot for fake molly (but real bath salts) –ingrained habits from Government Mule terr, I suppose, the weather was nice and there is water nearby, so of course, Phish played “Waves,” get it? Whatever.

I won’t talk about the first 8 minutes or so because honestly who cares about Phish’s absurd nonsense rhymes Tom Marshall cribbed from a Bazooka Joe strip decades ago. And fingerbang the poorly executed head section too. I am so fucking bored by rhetorical questions about whether I can live when I’m young. The morale of “Chalkdust Torture” is DO AS MUCH COCAINE AS YOU CAN, who cares if you blow out your arteries, rock and roll is dead anyway and the American Empire is on the decline. Fuck everything. #YOLOONO.

The jam starts to take shape around the 8th minute with Phish accidentally happening upon a tight little groove, Mike leading the way with a punchier than an NFL athlete sort of tone. He called it Swung on his blog, which he should spend more time on IMO. The Phish blogging game has clearly run out of gas–for that you are welcome.

Anyway, Mike should quit Phish to focus on his own band which used to be called “Mike Gordon Band,” but which now is, importantly, just “An Evening With Mike Gordon;” the subtitle of which is “a bunch of mercenaries I paid to make me sound good.” Anyway, back to “Chalkdust”, which again is a drug song, by a drug band, about drugs and peaking and stuff and whatever.

Finally, THANKFULLY, around the 9th minute they cohere around a little interesting ditty and off to the races they go, like some fourth place gelding, not so patiently awaiting the glue factory. Now I know how Deadheads felt after Cornell. The wheel{s} came off quickly, eh?

Phish fans take note, the headlight on our southbound train is dim and growing dimmer, the way the adventures of youth start to fade and all you remember is that time you let Cody Martinson go down on you in the 3rd grade because everyone is at least a little gay. Or a lot.

But sure as anything, after 90 seconds or so of somewhat interesting playing they fall back upon themselves and slow it down, probably so Fish could sip his Banana-flavored Ensure. Around 9:30 or so, Trey starts to show the slightest hint of initiative, sloppily wanking off some licks here and there, with halfway to the moon decent tone**for an aging rocker far too enamored and dependent on pedals and sleight of hand tricks. Trey was so slow and out of practice that the only way he could give the impression of speed–and really who needs speed in Rock and Roll cough “The Grateful Dead” cough ::remove fist:: was to actually move his arm quickly across his often out of tune guitar strings. What an Illusionist! OOPS, see that? I milked your trust fund for you. Oh and your kids college fund as well. Touring with Phish is like divorcing some JAP AEPhi cokehead over and over and over again. The head wasn’t even that good to being with. And they never ever swallowed. Abracadabra.

Some other stuff happens. The End. Whatever. //um//

From Zachary Adam Cohen:

Sure, @TheBabysMouth is the Bob Weir of Internet Trolls. This is satire and if you don’t know that, go fuck yourself back to Twiddle tour.